Union Pacific Co. (NYSE:UNP) Sees Significant Increase in Short Interest

Union Pacific Co. (NYSE:UNP) was the target of a significant growth in short interest in the month of December. As of December 31st, there was short interest totalling 6,890,000 shares, a growth of 10.8% from the December 15th total of 6,220,000 shares. Currently, 1.0% of the shares of the company are sold short. Based on an average daily volume of 2,860,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 2.4 days.

UNP stock traded up $1.52 during midday trading on Thursday, reaching $182.32. The company had a trading volume of 85,182 shares, compared to its average volume of 2,319,901. Union Pacific has a 1-year low of $149.09 and a 1-year high of $182.73. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $177.67 and a 200-day moving average price of $170.63. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.35, a current ratio of 0.89 and a quick ratio of 0.72. The company has a market capitalization of $125.51 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.04, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.91 and a beta of 1.08.

Union Pacific (NYSE:UNP) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 17th. The railroad operator reported $2.22 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.29 by ($0.07). The firm had revenue of $5.52 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.65 billion. Union Pacific had a return on equity of 32.65% and a net margin of 27.28%. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 7.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $2.15 earnings per share. As a group, research analysts anticipate that Union Pacific will post 8.48 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, December 30th. Shareholders of record on Friday, November 29th were given a $0.97 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, November 27th. This represents a $3.88 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.13%. Union Pacific’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 49.05%.

UNP has been the subject of a number of research reports. Morgan Stanley raised their target price on shares of Union Pacific from $136.00 to $139.00 and gave the stock an “underweight” rating in a research note on Monday, January 6th. Credit Suisse Group upped their price objective on Union Pacific from $182.00 to $185.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, October 18th. Citigroup upgraded Union Pacific from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday. Cowen reissued a “buy” rating and set a $172.00 target price on shares of Union Pacific in a report on Thursday, October 17th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Co initiated coverage on Union Pacific in a report on Monday, October 28th. They set a “market perform” rating and a $162.00 target price for the company. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and twelve have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $180.68.

In other Union Pacific news, EVP Elizabeth F. Whited sold 5,342 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $171.62, for a total transaction of $916,794.04. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 63,021 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $10,815,664.02. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this link. Company insiders own 9.96% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of UNP. Nuveen Asset Management LLC grew its stake in Union Pacific by 1,957.4% in the second quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC now owns 8,164,209 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $1,380,648,000 after acquiring an additional 7,767,384 shares during the period. Johanson Financial Advisors Inc. grew its stake in shares of Union Pacific by 17,670.0% in the 4th quarter. Johanson Financial Advisors Inc. now owns 2,456,353 shares of the railroad operator’s stock worth $13,589,000 after acquiring an additional 2,442,530 shares in the last quarter. Invesco Ltd. raised its holdings in shares of Union Pacific by 106.4% in the second quarter. Invesco Ltd. now owns 4,282,775 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $724,260,000 after purchasing an additional 2,207,908 shares during the last quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC raised its holdings in shares of Union Pacific by 15,152.8% in the third quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 1,792,513 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $290,351,000 after purchasing an additional 1,780,761 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Soroban Capital Partners LP lifted its position in shares of Union Pacific by 69.6% during the second quarter. Soroban Capital Partners LP now owns 4,320,067 shares of the railroad operator’s stock valued at $730,567,000 after purchasing an additional 1,772,727 shares in the last quarter. 77.55% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Union Pacific

Union Pacific Corporation, through its subsidiary, Union Pacific Railroad Company, engages in the railroad business in the United States. It offers transportation services for agricultural products, including grains, commodities produced from grains, fertilizers, and food and beverage products; coal and sand, as well as petroleum, liquid petroleum gases, and renewables; and construction products, industrial chemicals, plastics, forest products, specialized products, metals and ores, and soda ash, as well as intermodal and finished vehicles.

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